By Ammar AlShukry

I can’t count the number of times that I’ve heard someone exhale a statement of resentment towards the cold this year. This winter has been long. Really long. The chorus is the same from all of these individuals, “Is winter over yet? Is it spring yet?”

I’ve been reflecting over a verse of late that is stunning in its beauty. Allah says,

“Has the time not come for those who have believed that their hearts should become humbly submissive at the remembrance of Allah and what has come down of the truth? And that they not be like those who were given the Scripture before, and a long period passed over them, so their hearts hardened; and many of them are defiantly disobedient.” 57:16

These are hearts that have become like winter; cold, barren, hard, some even to the level of a polar vortex! And they’ve been like that for so long, isn’t it time for spring yet? As we desire so desperately for winter to be gone, to finally experience spring around us, we should desire more desperately to experience spring inside us – the softening of our hearts to the remembrance of Allah. The inner winter is more of a disaster than the outer.

But no matter how long the winter, be it the inner or the outer, change can come. In the next verse Allah says,

“Know that Allah gives life to the earth after its lifelessness. We have made clear to you the signs; perhaps you will understand.” 57:16

Be inspired by the signs, inspired by the leaves that grow and the life that you see come to return around you at the end of winter. The one who gives life to the earth can give life to your heart. It can appreciate His remembrance, it can appreciate the truth.

How appropriate is it that in the famous supplication from the Messenger ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him), he says,

“Oh Allah make the Quran for us, the spring of my heart.”

Be gone, winter! Spring, please come!